UPDATE 11:05pm: Highway 101 is currently closed a 1/2 mile north of Hopland, see here.
MENDOCINO Co., 1/21/17—High wind warnings, winter weather advisories, and hazard weather outlooks are in place for most of Mendocino County and the region tonight through Sunday, according to the National Weather Service, due to an incoming storm system. Widespread precipitation from 1 - 3 inches is expected to continue until Monday, with up to 6 inches possible in "upslope terrain." Snow is predicted to continue at elevations above 2500 feet, and possible hail storms may occur. More information on winds and current road conditions are listed below.
The Coast Guard has also closed harbors up and down the north coast, including Noyo Harbor, Humboldt Bay, and Crescent City due to "extreme seas." According to the Fort Bragg Advocate-News, Fort Bragg Police Department has closed Noyo Beach until the seas subside, and there are reports of damage at Noyo Harbor after swells reached more than 30 feet, including a lifted shipping container at one of The Mendocino Voice's favorite coast restaurants, the Sea-Pal Cove. We hope they've weathered the storm and will be back to serving delicious fish and chips and chowder soon!
High winds are expected to begin this evening and last through mid-day Sunday. Wind warnings issued Friday have now been upgraded: sustained winds may reach 40 mph, and gusts of wind are now expected to reach more than 70 mph in some places. Inland valleys are expected to receive weaker winds than those at higher elevations, ridges, and the coast.
Residents are warned to bring in or tie down any outside furniture, toys, and trash cans. You should also watch for falling trees, and prepare for possible outages.
Here's a message from NOAA's Facebook:
A High Wind Warning has been issued for many parts of the region, with lower level Wind Advisories issued for the northern Humboldt and Mendocino Coasts - including Eureka. The strongest winds are expected to occur across high elevation ridges and some coastal headlands, particularly in southwestern Humboldt County along the Lost Coast and adjacent mountains. Wind gusts in the warning areas will likely reach 50 to 70 mph, and may even exceed these speeds along some of the tallest and windiest peaks in the King Range. Wind gusts in the advisory area are likely to reach 40 to 50 mph, with gusts in the 30 to 40 mph range much more common in Eureka. Inland valleys, while within warning areas labeled on the map, will be breezy but should remain protected from the more damaging wind gusts.
ROADS: Currently, Hwy 128 in Mendocino in closed at the mouth of the Navarro due to flooding. The 175 near the 101 in Hopland was closed yesterday due to flooding but re-opened Saturday morning. There is now a working camera near Highway 1 and the Garcia River so residents can check for flooding, and as of 6pm, CP is reporting a 2 inch crack in the northbound lane of Hwy 1 between Lake Street and Main Street in Point Arena. There are also reports of boulders on Hwy 162 to Covelo. We'll be updating as information comes in.
If driving in rain or hail, NOAA recommends "ease off the gas pedal instead of using the brakes and avoid make any big steering adjustments. Slow down and turn on your headlights to increase your visibility in any precipitation." NOAA recommends adjusting travel plans to avoid being on the roads from Saturday night until Sunday morning as hazards can be especially difficult to see during dark skies such as branches, ice, or hail.
You can check any road closures here; you can also call 1-800-GAS-ROAD. You can also check for current traffic incidents on the CHP incident page here, and the Caltrans traffic cameras (whichever ones are working) can be found here. Current weather conditions for your area can be found here. PGE outages (and a way to report current outages) are listed here.
Here's a video of the north jetty in Humboldt Bay taken of some the high swells today from the Water Safety Coalition of Northwestern California: